Man! To have been at the one of the few shows when they played R&C . . . what a treat that must have been. It was only one of the songwriting team of Garcia/Hunter's most shining moments, that's all.
There were a number of really good songs that Jerry and Hunter composed that were, more or less, confined to Garcia's repertoire that was kept ex parte, if you will, from his Grateful Dead material; e.g
., Mission In The Rain, Catfish John, Run For The Roses, and Cats Under The Stars, just to name a few. But this song in particular, I feel, is outstanding among everything they ever wrote together as being one of their most fully realized emotive statements. It was perhaps their best ballad in the fullest sense in that it not only pulls the strings of the heart as well as anything you will find from Rogers & Hart, Rodgers & Hammerstein, or even Roy Rogers and Dale Evans (sorry-had to go there), not to mention Lennon & McCartney, but it also tells a fully realized story. It is a wonderful song, and it was an excellent choice on the part of whomever it was that decided to put into the Dead's play list, whether it was Jerry, himself, or whether Phil, Weir, or somebody else coaxed him into it.
The problem, though, is not with the sound quality of the recording; it is, rather, with the fact that it seems that everyone is a critic, and right now I choose to be a critic of the other critics. This recording is not that bad at all, despite what some here have said. Listen to the other recordings on this site of the few other times the band played this song, and you will find that this is really crisp and clear. Enjoy and quit looking for reasons to complain! If you want perfection, check out the 1972 Miami Dolphins instead.